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Some ranchers add to herd

By Jerry Nine

(Dec. 11)—Killing cows and bulls this past week were higher, which was not that surprising considering a huge area of snow and ice where movement of cattle mostly stopped. Bred cows are still in very strong demand with several ranchers willing to add some to their herd. One rancher told me he was down 17 percent less than normal while others have said as much as 50 percent. I definitely have one pasture where there are several dead spots of 5 or 10 acres but where it didn’t die the grass was two feet tall but still thin. I am just thankful the drought did not last another year as it is very challenging paying high prices for grain and cake. One main thing we have to be thankful for was the fact that our prices were not at a very cheap figure like they normally are in a drought. With total cattle numbers already down and surrounding states willing to buy our cattle, luckily it was our salvation. Nothing is more financially devastating than having to sell at a cheap price and then buy back at a high price. One rancher said to me this morning, “It is going to cost something to replace these cows,” meaning they are high. I agree but I still like our market situation where it is now. When you can put on a pound of gain outside and net between $.50 and $1.70 per pound it adds up. But I would agree as high as calves are, you need to get that much back in order to make any money.

Basically, if you are healthy then you should be happy. I do not take any medicine. The only thing I take is an aspirin. One every day for my kids, one for salebarn employees, one for consignors selling cattle whose wives have made them irritable on sale day, one lately because my water well at my house has been messed up. And then I always take one just in case I have forgotten something.

There are two couples that run around with each other all the time. In fact if you see one couple, you always see the other. One husband said to the other guy, “If you died tomorrow and I just happened to get your wife pregnant, would we be relation?” He said, “No, that would not make us relation, that would simply make us even.”

A lady came into the coffee shop this morning. I said to her, “How are you doing?” She said, “I’m just fat and sassy.” I quickly reassured her by saying, “Now, listen—you are not sassy.”

Editor’s note: Jerry Nine, Woodward, Okla., is a lifetime cattleman who grew up on his family’s ranch near Laverne, Okla.

Date: 12/16/2013

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